Now Reading
Date Night: Forbidden Vancouver’s Lost Souls of Gastown

Date Night: Forbidden Vancouver’s Lost Souls of Gastown

Actually getting out the door with only your significant other is pretty impressive, scattering bedtime advice and goodnight kisses as you back out the door. It shuts, you sigh, and then… oh yes, what will we actually do on your date night? And you end up having dinner, or yawning through a film.

How about following a costumed storyteller through the back streets of Gastown in the dark?

A Date Night that’s Something Else

Forbidden Vancouver runs several walking tours in Vancouver. We met up with a young woman in late Victorian costume, in Cathedral Square on Dunsmuir Street. It had been pouring rain not an hour before, so I expected a low turn out, but 10 people appeared out of the darkness to follow Sarah, our guide.

I was expecting a stand and deliver walking tour, a bit of lecture, a few interesting stories, but this was something else entirely. More like a one-woman show at close quarters. It’s a bit unnerving at first, standing a foot from someone performing, but by the second stop we relaxed into it. If Sarah hadn’t been so convincing, so real, it would be have been cringe inducing. Thankfully her storytelling drew us in. It’s impossible not to feel connected as she dragged us through a back hallway of a hotel, into the parking lot, to tell us the story of her friend Klondike Kate receiving a distressing letter.

A Tour for Locals

Like the some of the best historical fiction, Sarah told us about interesting characters connected to Gastown from her perspective as a minor character – a barmaid, a good-time girl, a parlour maid. Part of the charm of this tour was our route through alleys and back streets. I got turned around a few times and wasn’t sure where we would come out. I’d highly recommend doing this tour at night, it definitely heightened the dramatic elements.

Even as a Vancouverite quite interested in our city’s history, I didn’t know the details of half the stories she told us, all rooted in fact. This is definitely not just a tour for tourists.

See Also

At $22 a person, it’s not a bargain date night. The quality of our guide and the depth of the research in the story she told, though, made this much more than a walking tour — more of a ambulatory theatre experience. And worth the price.

Forbidden Vancouver | Twitter | Facebook

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Established in 2009, is an online resource providing urban, hyperlocal information on what to do and what's new for families in Metro Vancouver. 

© 2021 Crisp Media Inc.

Scroll To Top